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Budget 2005: Commitment to Pacific broadcasting

Budget 2005: Government confirms commitment to Pacific broadcasting

New funding for Pacific radio network Niu FM will ensure Pacific communities continue to have a strong voice in New Zealand's broadcasting sector, Broadcasting Minister Steve Maharey and Pacific Island Affairs Minister Phil Goff announced today.

Niu FM - which broadcasts news and information in English and key Pacific languages - will receive $12 million over the next four years as part of Budget 2005. The funding represents an increase of $1.26 million a year on funding allocated to pilot the service from 2002/03 to 2004/05.

Steve Maharey said funding to continue the successful three-year pilot confirmed the government's commitment to Pacific Broadcasting.

"The funding will ensure that Niu FM continues to be an important source of information, discussion and debate for New Zealand's Pacific communities.

"Throughout its three-year pilot, Niu FM has played an active role in promoting and maintaining Pacific languages and culture. The network now reaches 85 per cent of the Pacific population from Whangarei to Invercargill and is continuing to grow its listener base."

Phil Goff said the increased investment in Niu FM was good news for all New Zealanders.

“Niu FM will continue to provide all New Zealanders with a window into Pacific peoples’ views, languages, music and stories and will continue to make a positive contribution to New Zealand’s identity as a Pacific nation."

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